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5 Tips for Holding a Successful Virtual Conference

5 Tips for Holding a Successful Virtual Conference

In the past year, we have been bombarded with ‘virtual’ everything– virtual working, virtual coffee breaks, even virtual pub quizzes! However, as the COVID-19 virus is set to outlast the pandemic, some of these virtual practices may be here to stay.

Therefore, we will take a look at virtual conferences, exploring tips and tricks for hosting a virtual event during the pandemic and beyond.

What Is a Virtual Conference?

Though in-person conferences have been allowed since 17th May, there are still guidelines and capacity caps in place to reduce the spread of COVID-19. Of course, the best way to make sure that everyone can discuss things together safely and reduce the spread is to hold your conference online.

Even before the pandemic virtual conferences have proven to be a great business move, as it can widen your reach beyond any geographic boundary. But it’s not as simple as stringing together some webinars and hoping for the best! Thus, here are some tips on how to host a successful virtual conference.

Choose the Right Platform to Host Your Virtual Conference

When it comes to choosing a platform to help you host your virtual conference, there are many options available to businesses regardless of whether your event is small or large-scale. As you are browsing through virtual event software, look for features such as a high maximum number of attendees, screen and file sharing, analytics, multimedia presentation, and so on.

With ON24, you can benefit from scalable content, including breakout rooms, group networking and Q&A sessions, and real time analytics reporting behavioral data. They also boast comprehensive customization, allowing you to add custom branding, colors, fonts, and design to every page and experience.

Select a Theme, Topics, and Speakers

Firstly, you might select the overarching theme of the conference. What is the context? What is the objective? What do you hope people will get out of the experience?  Now that you have your theme, it is time to start choosing your topics of discussion and your speakers. You can then introduce your objectives in a quick opening statement which can then be revisited at the end of the conference.

Make a Registration Form

In order to attend your conference, attendees must presumably sign up for (and pay for) the event. Thus, a registration form can be a great way to collect information on your audience, getting to know their skills, so that you can fine-tune your content.

Promote Your Virtual Conference

Incorporate advertising your virtual conference into your usual marketing strategies. Perhaps you might advertise the conference on social media yourself or use social media influencers to promote the event, as these methods can then be reposted by attendees themselves.

Treat Attendees as Collaborators

In addition to helping you promote the conference, attendees can be valuable collaborators and contributors to the learning experience. You can embrace this by featuring attendees in the session’s content, for example by having a live chat feature, Q&A session, or the opportunity to volunteer case studies.

With all this in mind, all that is left to do is to get planning! Follow these tips for a successful venture in hosting a virtual conference.

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by Lottie Pritchard // Lottie Pritchard is a contributor to Businessing Magazine.

Opinions expressed by contributors are their own.